You must have seen the great physicist Stephen Hawking sitting on his wheelchair. A similar version of the wheelchair has now been invented by Ashutosh Prakash. The final semester student at the Birla Institute Of Technology, Patna has designed a voice-controlled, battery-operated wheelchair.
He designed the wheelchair for his old grandfather who wishes to work independently without taking help from others. In an interview with Hindustan Times, Ashutosh said, “My grandfather hates it when somebody tries to help him with his daily chores or holds his hand to help him walk. I am sure there are many more like him. I wanted to do something for them.”
The wheelchair is a basic one that responds to voice commands for four basic movements — left, right, forward and reverse. It automatically stops when it faces any obstruction or approaches the staircase.
He came up with the idea during his internship period at Indian Institute of Technology, Patna, guided by Dr Atul Thakur.
A voice processor is connected with the wheelchair. It also has microcontrollers to amplify control signals, motor and battery and microchips. It costs Rs 20,000 and can support a person weighing up to 80 kg. However, it can be modified by using stronger battery and motor to support more weight.
Ashutosh has kept the design open-ended and wants others to improve on it. The sole purpose of this wheelchair is to help his grandfather.
The Logical Indian appreciates Ashutosh’s efforts for designing such a product. We wish him all the best for his future.